ZESA Seeks To Hike Electricity Tariffs 9-fold – Report

The Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (ZESA), intends to hike tariffs from the current 9,83 cent kilowatt-hour to RTGS dollars at the interbank rate to almost $1 a unit.

The power utility is reportedly seeking Government approval for customers to pay the interbank rate equivalent of the 9,83 US cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) tariff.

ZESA Holdings chief executive, Patrick Chivaura, said that the tariff adjustment will help to cushion the power utility from rising operating costs.

Chivaura told Business weekly that the tariffs ZESA currently charges have been degraded to such an extent that consumers are now getting electricity for free. He said:

What we are seeking is simply a restoration of the value of the old approved tariff so that it does not come as big bang. If we are going to have an upward review, it will be minimal.

Finance and Economic Development Minister Mthuli Ncube recently said that electricity tariffs will be raised soon.

Speaking at an Alpha Media Holdings event dubbed In Conversation with Trevor, Said Ncube:

The power situation is very serious. In the short-term, we need to work on demand management strategies, where we categorise users and come up with a differentiated tariff system.

For instance, there is no reason why the mining sector should not pay a tariff linked to the exchange rate because they are major earners of foreign currency.

So, we have to look at the demand side, the supply and internal operations of Zesa. In the past, I was unhappy about an instant tariff increase, but having done all these things, I am more convinced now we can increase the tariff.

If we are only having power during the night when we don’t need it, then it doesn’t matter if the tariff goes up.

In terms of how much, I can’t say, but those simulations are being done and soon, we will have a new tariff.

More: Business Weekly

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